Return to macro

In spring 2019 I taught the macro principles class for the first time in a few years. It was an interesting experience because I’ve been a regular participant in our department’s weekly macro seminar and I had a bunch of new material and in-class tricks to try out. One thing I noticed: Macroeconomics is harder than my students would think from spending time on social media. There, people get lots of agreement when they say the case is “overwhelming” for one macro policy and there’s “no evidence” for another. Trust me, on all of the major controversies, from the minimum wage to monetary policy, there are no overwhelming cases or totally unsupported positions. With the framework of introductory macroeconomics, though, it’s possible to make sense of the competing arguments and come to a reasoned judgment. Students who worked hard in that class came away with a good skill set for making sense out of the clutter.